Skip to comments.Marcellus Williams faces execution despite new evidence
Posted on 08/21/2017 2:43:20 PM PDT by Ennis85
On Tuesday night, the US state of Missouri is planning to execute Marcellus Williams despite a new report from a DNA expert that his lawyers argue supports his claim to innocence.
In 2001, Williams, who is now 48, was convicted of the 1998 killing of Lisha Gayle. But his lawyers say new DNA evidence could exonerate him. The Missouri Supreme Court, however, has refused to review that evidence.
Williams' lawyer, Kent Gipson, has described the Supreme Court's decision as "baffling".
"We petitioned the court to look at the new evidence on August 14th, and less than 24 hours later they decided based on the court files that the execution should go ahead anyway. This is unprecedented," Gipson told Al Jazeera.
Williams, who has always claimed he is innocent, was sentenced to death in 2001, three years after Gayle, a former newspaper reporter, was murdered in her home in a gated community in St Louis, Missouri. He was originally due to be executed on January 28, 2015, but Missouri's high court decided to postpone the execution to allow time for new DNA tests to be conducted.
Those tests showed that the male DNA on the murder weapon, a knife, was not Williams' but belonged to a third, unknown person.
"There is no physical evidence, no eyewitnesses that directly connect Williams to the murder, the DNA on the weapon wasn't his, the bloody footprint at the murder scene wasn't from Williams' shoe and was a different size, and the hair fibres found weren't his," said Gipson. "It was someone else that killed Gayle, not Williams."
How was Williams convicted?
During Williams' trial, the prosecution based its case on the testimonies of two people, Henry Cole and Laura Asaro.
(Excerpt) Read more at aljazeera.com ...
Sounds like a railroad job........................
Al Jazeera? No thanks.That alone causes me to suspect that this is just another “I didn do nuthin’”
On the other hand, Al Jazeera.
prosecutors are in the job of prosecuting... sometimes they forget the justice part.
[Williams was convicted of killing Gayle, 42, at her home in the gated Ames Place neighborhood on Aug. 11, 1998. The prosecution said Williams was burglarizing the home when Gayle, who had been taking a shower, surprised him. She fought for her life as she was stabbed repeatedly.]
One FReeper said he keeps his pistol nearby even when he is in the shower.
[One FReeper said he keeps his pistol nearby even when he is in the shower.]
Yes, a shower gun. Preferably in Stainless steel with non-slip grips.
prosecutors are in the job of prosecuting... sometimes they forget the justice part.
If these parts are true, then good riddance to this thug.
[Williams placed Gayles purse and her husbands laptop computer and black carrying case in his backpack.
A day or two after the murder, Williams sold the laptop to Glenn Roberts.
The police also recovered the laptop computer from Glenn Roberts.]
If he had an accomplice, he needs to be singing real quick.
that’s why you da man, sam.
Yeah the one I usually carry would be quite unsuitable. However, the Taurus.......
Al Jazeera keepin’ it real...
Yeah I’m sure homey is innocent. /s
State of Missouri vs. Marcellus Williams
On August 11, 1998, Williams drove his grandfathers Buick LeSabre to a bus stop and caught a bus to University City. Once there, he began looking for a house to break into. Williams came across the home of Felicia Gayle.
He knocked on the front door but no one answered. Williams then knocked out a window pane near the door, reached in, unlocked the door, and entered Gayles home. He went to the second floor and heard water running in the shower. It was Gayle. Williams went back downstairs, rummaged through the kitchen, found a large butcher knife, and waited.
Gayle left the shower and called out, asking if anyone was there. She came down the stairs. Williams attacked, stabbing and cutting Gayle forty-three times, inflicting seven fatal wounds.
Afterwards, Williams went to an upstairs bathroom and washed off. He took a jacket and put it on to conceal the blood on his shirt. Before leaving, Williams placed Gayles purse and her husbands laptop computer and black carrying case in his backpack. The purse contained, among other things, a St. Louis Post-Dispatch ruler and a calculator. Williams left out the front door and caught a bus back to the Buick.
After returning to the car, Williams picked up his girlfriend, Laura Asaro. Asaro noticed that, despite the summer heat, Williams was wearing a jacket. When he removed the jacket, Asaro noticed that Williams shirt was bloody and that he had scratches on his neck. Williams claimed he had been in a fight. Later in the day, Williams put his bloody clothes in his backpack and threw them into a sewer drain, claiming he no longer wanted them.
Asaro also saw a laptop computer in the car. A day or two after the murder, Williams sold the laptop to Glenn Roberts.
The next day, Asaro went to retrieve some clothes from the trunk of the car. Williams did not want her to look in the trunk and tried to push her away. Before he could, Asaro snatched a purse from the trunk. She looked inside and found Gayles Missouri state identification card and a black coin purse.
Asaro demanded that Williams explain why he had Gayles purse. Williams then confessed that the purse belonged to a woman he had killed. He explained in detail how he went into the kitchen, found a butcher knife, and waited for the woman to get out of the shower.
He further explained that when the woman came downstairs from the shower, he stabbed her in the arm and then put his hand over her mouth and stabbed her in the neck, twisting the knife as he went. After relaying the details of the murder, Williams grabbed Asaro by the throat and threatened to kill her, her children and her mother if she told anyone.
On August 31, 1998, Williams was arrested on unrelated charges and incarcerated at the St. Louis City workhouse. From April until June 1999, Williams shared a room with Henry Cole. One evening in May, Cole and Williams were watching television and saw a news report about Gayles murder. Shortly after the news report, Williams told Cole that he had committed the crime. Over the next few weeks, Cole and Williams had several conversations about the murder. As he had done with Laura Asaro, Williams went into considerable detail about how he broke into the house and killed Gayle.
After Cole was released from jail in June 1999, he went to the University City police and told them about Williams involvement in Gayles murder. He reported details of the crime that had never been publicly reported.
In November of 1999, University City police approached Asaro to speak with her about the murder. Asaro told the police that Williams admitted to her that he had killed Gayle. The next day, the police searched the Buick LeSabre and found the Post-Dispatch ruler and calculator belonging to Gayle. The police also recovered the laptop computer from Glenn Roberts. The laptop was identified as the one stolen from Gayles residence.
Williams was tried for Gayles murder and convicted.
Yeah, sounds like this article only got details from defense attorneys and has outright falsehoods in it while leaving out a lot of incriminating details.
For example, this story claims the girlfriend only saw scratches, and leaves out that she also saw him wearing the victim’s jacket, covering up bloody clothes, and saw the victim’s laptop and purse in the car. It also says that the girlfriend claims he had her driver’s license, when it was actually a state-issued ID. It’s perfectly possible that the driver’s license WAS found at the house but she also had a state ID in her purse.
Then there is the fact that the “jailhouse snitch” supposedly heard a confession not when Williams was being investigated for the murder but when he was being held on a different charge, and the snitch reported to police details that hadn’t been released to the public.
If there is new DNA evidence, it should be examined. The worst thing that could happen for those of us who support the death penalty is that an innocent be executed.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.